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tv   The Ed Show  MSNBC  November 9, 2011 8:00pm-9:00pm PST

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night online at our blog, the last word.msnbc.com. "the ed show" live is-up next. good evening, americans, and welcome to a special edition of the ed show tonight here on msnbc. not on your life would you ever think it would end this way for this man. penn state university caught somewhere between the unthinkable and the unreal. a zone the university could not afford to be in. tonight the board of trustees voted unanimously to fire long-time football coach joe paterno. you didn't have to be a college football fan to know this man. his respect was legendary, no coach had won more games, fewer coaches will ever garnish his reputation. and in a few moments, by a unanimous vote tonight, all of that changed. legendary head football coach joe paterno has been fired by
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penn state university. as a broadcaster, it's almost hard to say. joe paterno will not coach another football game at penn state amid allegations he did not do enough to stop the alearned sexual abuse of boys by a former assistant football coach. here is part of the news conference held by the penn state board of trustees just an hour ago. >> our view was -- a larger view of what was necessary to move the university in the right direction. the specific aspects of these terrible activities that occurred and the terrible damage that was done really remains to be established by whatever law enforcement investigations are yet underway. as well as the investigation by our own board of trustees. >> top penn state university officials are accused of failing to properly address decades of child sexual abuse allegations. the emergency meeting tonight by the penn state board of trustees tried to get a handle on a
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scandal growing by the day. legendary football coach joe paterno tried to avoid being fired by announcing his retirement earlier today, effective at the end of the season. the board of trustees decided paterno had to go now. the associated press reports, after the decision for paterno addressed students at his house and said, right now, i'm not the football coach, and that's something i have to get used to. former assistant football coach and defensive coordinator, jerry sandusky was arrested saturday on charges of sexually abusing eight young boys. a ninth accuser has also come forward. penn state president graham spanier has also been fired. let's bring in eugene robinson, associate editor and pulitzer prize winning columnist for the washington post. and also, jason whitlock, national columnist for
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foxsports.com. welcome in tonight. >> thank you. >> i'm shocked, eugene robinson, that it's all unfolded so fast and devastating to the university. we should point out on campus right now, there are students who are gathering at the university. and many chants in support of joe paterno are being yelled out by the students as they continue to gather. but it just seems to me, as it was stated in this press conference tonight, the university really had no choice. >> i don't think the university had a choice either. the allegations are so -- more than disturbing, they're just so shocking. you have -- this is a great state university that draws students from all around the world. it has not just a reputation to protect, but a standing to protect. an obligation, i think, to do something. to show that it's serious about addressing what seems to have happened there. and so they made the decision -- they got the sense listening to
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the press conference that joe paterno's sort of preemptive move to say, well, i'll resign at the end of the season, didn't sit well with the board. you got that sense -- the question was not asked or answered, but you got the sense that didn't sit well with the board. >> jason whitlock your reaction tonight as to the decision of the board of trustees at penn state? >> i think they made the absolute right decision, the only decision they had to make. what i'm concerned about is what's transpiring on that campus right now with these kids. joe paterno whipped these kids into a frenzy. his statement today about staying until the end of the season. if he were really concerned about this university, he would have taken the decision out of the board of trustees hands and resigned effective immediately and told those kids on that campus, that's the right thing for me to do, given this situation.
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he, instead, chose a very selfish exit. and now we don't know what these kids are going to do on this campus. if flynn gets hurt tonight, that's on joe paterno as well? >> you agree with that, gene? >> i do. and joe paterno, legendary figure. highly regarded in the sports world and in the nation. he's 84 years old, and he's held on to that job with the tenacity and bullheadedness that -- you know, the university has tried to edge him out in the past, and he has held on. it's not -- it shouldn't surprise us, i think, that he finds it so difficult to let go. that he couldn't resign immediately, wanted to stay until the end of the season. which was unreal. that wasn't going to happen. >> as the story unfolds, i almost get a feeling like joe paterno didn't understand the severity of all of this. slowly he came to grips, i'm
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going do have to step down as the head football coach. it wasn't me that did it -- it's almost as if he doesn't understand the gravity of it. >> the story was moving real fast. the board started meeting immediately. how could they not? the story came out on saturday. it took paterno a while, and maybe he gets it now. >> i think it's clear that the board acted to save the integrity and the honor and the credibility of the university. this is much bigger than any one coach, any one game, any one team. this is a very serious matter. and it's not going to go away any time soon. i agree with you, i'm shocked that joe paterno didn't understand the severity of it, and realized that he had to step away from this. but looking at it right now -- >> well, i think -- >> go ahead. as a sportswriter, we are very quick to criticize athletes when they get caught up in their fame and get delusional about how
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important they are. and sometimes we forget, these coaches now are just as big a celebrity as the athlete, they make just as much money as the athletes, they have just as many groupies as the athletes and they get delusional as well. >> we saw that at the press conference tonight, jason, those people that were answering the questions, they were in total disbelief that the university would fire joe paterno. i think you're spot on on that. he had some friendly media there tonight going after the board of trustees, the gentleman who was holding the press conference, explaining the untenable position the university's in. >> if he had an ounce of self-awareness -- he's no different than the athletes, the young immature athletes, this guy is 84. if he had an ounce of self-awareness, he would have stepped aside immediately. obviously, if he had any self-awareness, in 2002 he would have done the right thing. now that it's out -- and keep in mind, this has been out -- this
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grand jury investigation has been written about in pennsylvania for months. they knew this was coming. i believe everyone in pennsylvania should be questioned about what took so long for the grand jury report? it took three years, and it just happened to come out a week after joe paterno passes eddie robinson for the all time wins record. were they also protecting joe pa? and waiting to release the indictment until after he got to victory 409? >> and here you have now, the question was joe paterno protecting one of his old coaches, defensive coordinator who helped him win a couple national championships, and the loyalty was just too thick and he couldn't bring himself to go on with this situation than what he had done, passing it up the chain. it's others who say joe paterno was at the top of the chain at penn state. >> he was the most important figure, the most powerful man at
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penn state, there's no question of that. i did want to say a word about the other official who lost his job tonight. graham spanier, president of penn state, one of the longest serving and one of the highest paid college presidents in the country. his first reaction on saturday, after the charges came out was to vigorously defend the two officials who were charged with not reporting the crime. but he switched -- he saw how fast this was moving, and, in fact, he issued a very intelligent and i think gracious exit statement saying this is definitely in the best interest of the university, they need new leadership to move on. >> joining me now via phone from the campus of penn state university is alison cardeval. what are you seeing and hearing? >> reporter: there are over
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1,000 students that have poured into the street off the campus. and are protesting joe paterno's firing by the board tonight. it was a unanimous decision by the board tonight. right now they're doing a chant. earlier they were chanting one more game. they're obviously not ready to lose who they affectionately called joe pa. >> i don't think gene robinson, this is going to have any effect whatsoever, this is clearly an emotional reaction by students who may not have all the facts or may not have been following the story. >> it's not going to have an effect, it's clear. this is done. it's a done deal. as to what happens, if something happens in the street, this will probably just peter out. if it looks like it's going to last, the thing for paterno to do would be to go out and calm them down. >> what is the demeanor of the
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crowd right now? are they agitated or is this a benign college rally? >> reporter: at this points, it's more of a benign college rally. somebody's shooting off bottle rockets right now, i have to tell you, the chant -- i'm standing next to police cars in the middle of the street, and there are i'ves in riot gear. they're preparing for the worse, even though they hope students will keep it where they are right now. right now it's all chants, it's all cheers. they have their phones up in the air, taking pictures of everything. and at the time, there's no violence whatsoever. this is similar to what they did last night, but on a much larger scale. i cannot see down to the end of the street. i don't have any idea how far down the avenue it goes.
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this is the place where students come wherever they have a rally like this, be it over something good or bad. so the police here are ready to try to make sure that things don't get out of hand. the truth of the matter is, if it wasn't for police, it could get out of hand very quickly. >> i wonder if the students are going to be calling for joe paterno to come out and address the crowd tonight. he's already made a statement saying he's no longer the head football coach at penn state, and he's got to deal with that. but often times these kind of crowds can go bigger before they get smaller. and they see they get some attention, and it could end up going through the night. >> reporter: it's not done growing, as i'm standing looking down q street, there's a steady line of students who are pouring in from the campus. they're pouring in from the other end of beaver street. so the chant they've now taken
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up is we want joe about they'll carry on with this, and move on to another one. now there's movement down the street a little bit, but still very peaceful at this point. they're not causing any trouble as far as -- they're being civil at this point to each other. except for the trustees, they've had some nasty chants, things i can't repeat. >> all right, alison kartevold reporter at penn state where students are gathering in protest and rallying in support of the just recently fired football coach joe paterno. the board of trustees making a decision to move in a new direction. seeking new leadership at the university. that was the term that was used by one of the board of trustees tonight. joe paterno out after 46 years as head coach at penn state, alison, gene robinson and jason
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whitlock, thanks for joining us. coming up, more on the incredible fall of joe paterno and the sexual abuse scandal that has rocked penn state university. steven a. smith is coming up. so is b.j. schechter and mike pap antonio on the ongoing legal issues sur rounding all of this. rick perry makes an unbelievable gaffe at tonight's republican debate. will it end his campaign? ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] everyone deserves the gift of a pain free holiday. this season, discover aleve. all day pain relief with just two pills.
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more on the late breaking news, penn state has fired joe paterno and president graham spanier effective immediately. more reaction and the legal take from mike papantonio, steven a. smith and b.j. schechter right after this. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 let's talk about fees.
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welcome back to the ed show, breaking news out of person state university tonight at this hour, joe paterno has been fired, along with penn state president graham spanier due to a sexual abuse scandal that's surrounding the university. these two men are out amid allegations that they did not do enough to stop the sexual abuse by a former assistant football coach, once they learned about the unthinkable incident in 2002. the sexual abuse scandal includes 9 allegations over 15 years. joe paterno is at the center of it. in 2002 when he was informed of jerry sandusky's alleged sexual
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abuse of a 10-year-old child, paterno turned it over to tim curley and gary schultz. those two men didn't report the incident and joe paterno apparently took no further action. in at least three incidents, various penn state officials were informed of possible child abuse. let's bring in ring of fire radio hosts and attorney mike papantonio. also joining me by phone are nationally cindy indicatesed radio host and journalist, steven a. smith, and b.j. schechter executive sports editor for sportsillustrated.com. gentlemen, thanks for your time tonight. mike papantonio was this an easier call for the board of trustees than what fans might expect? >> this is the only call they could make. and if fans understood what this board of trustees is up against, they would understand what's at stake here. the board did exactly what they had to do, it's damage control,
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i'm talking about money damages. i'm talking about reputation damages. the number that could attach to this as far as loss to this university just in dollars is staggering. already, you have them being investigated for the cleary act. the cleary act is a federal act that requires schools -- demands and mandates schools who get federal funding to report incidents like this within 60 days after they happen. and if they don't, they can lose big, big money. the other part of this is, these people who are out on the streets, if they knew the story, about victim one, 2007 through 2008, an 11-year-old, sodomized, took to preseason game practices so sandusky could get to him. victim two, 2002, a 10-year-old, sodomized. this is one that was clearly reported to paterno, the man who reported it went to paterno's
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house. he knew exactly what was at stake here. from a moral standpoint, this is inexcusab inexcusable. from a legal stand point, he's probably going to get away with not being brought into the criminal acts. he will, by the time this is over, this is going to cost joe paterno a lot of money. the people often the streets, they're not thinking about victim three, a 13-year-old who was sodomized in the shower. victim four, 1996, a 12-year-old raped and sodomized. they took him to bowl games. the people on the streets that are supporting paterno right now, they ought to talk to the parents of victim five, 1996, 8-year-old fondling in the shower, in the locker room. they knew or should have known by that time what was going on. then there's victim six, 1998, 8-year-old shower sex, locker room regular, mother talked directly to the police. the police knew about it, the campus police knew about it,
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they did nothing. and you know why? they did nothing because of the legend of joe paterno and the football team, rather than carrying about a human life. victim eight, 8-year-old -- >> steven h. smith, we have never seen a story like this in college football. your reaction to what is unfolding at this hour? >> well, i agree with what your guest just said, the fact of the matter is, i went on espn earlier this morning, and i called for joe paterno to be removed immediately. there was a bit of audacity to his statement. he talked about dignity and integrity, he talked about love for the university, love for kids that their parents had entrusted to him. if you listen to his statement, and you read his statement, what you will see is a tremendous concern for the university. and the name, the university's name, and that is what is at the heart of this problem. they were more concerned about the name penn state university,
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about the football program, and the good name in all fairness that joe paterno had worked decades to establish in the process of generating nearly a billion dollars for the school over that time period. so they thought about all of those things, if jerry sandusky, the alleged villain in all of this, molested nine children -- if this guy was just a regular old guy at the university and he was not somebody that was employed by joe paterno, once considered the heir apparent to joe paterno, there's no way on earth he would have been able to retire. there's no way he would have had access to the facilities, there's no way they would have agreed to him, before, you promised not to take showers with little boys in the future. it's utterly ridiculous. >> b.j., i have to ask you, will the fans come around on all of this?
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will they support the board of trustees? >> i think what you saw from the press conference from the board of trustees today, was really embarrassing, you see some of the line of questions where people were really up in arms as to why the board had the audacity to remove joe paterno as head coach. in the short run, i think people in that area that have been so enamored with penn state over the years have rose colored glasses and they don't see the whole picture. this stopped being about joe paterno a long time ago, when he didn't do what was right, go to these police and stick up for these kids. >> sandusky is probably going to talk to prosecutors. that's where we're going to find out what joe paterno knew, and what kind of conversations he had with joe paterno. i'm speculating. your thoughts? >> well, that's it exactly, look, right now, they have to worry about some clear issues,
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conspiracy to cover up an investigation, accomplice after the fact. then you get to exactly what you're talking about, ed. you get to a witness, who's on the stand and he's asked questions. then he has the possibility of perjury. and as this thing develops, sandusky does not have the character to protect his pal joe paterno like joe tried to protect him. >> you bet. >> it's going to get worse. >> mike papantonio, steven a. smith, and b.j. schechter, stay with us. we'll have more on this when we come back. later, rick perry's incredible meltdown at the debate tonight. have you to see it to believe it. and it's the end -- is it the end of the road for the texas governor? the postal service is critical to our economy--
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those who argue this is a rush to judgment. there has not been a full investigation, how can you reach this conclusion at is this time? >> as i said, these are judgments and decisions and balances that boards have to make with thoughtful deliberation and arguably things had reached a point we needed to make a decision in the long-term interest of the university. >> that was the vice president of the board of trustees making the statement that joe paterno is no longer the head football coach at penn state. joining me are mike papantonio
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and b.j. schechter. this alleged abuse went over 15 years. steven a. smith, does joe paterno have to clear his name tonight? >> well, you know what, he -- he could try, but i don't think you can. the fact of the matter is, i read the court documents from the affidavit, the testimony of the grand jury, and he was made aware of at least one incident. one too many, to be quite honest with you. what he decided to do was to go to his immediate supervisor, the athletic director. the athletic director took it to the vp of finance and business and took it to the president. ultimately, nobody took it to law enforcement officials. not one single person. the most egregious person in that equation in terms of those who are aware of sandusky's actions is obviously a guy by the name of tony mcqueary, i believep he was aged 28 and
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literally witnessed a 10-year-old boy being sodomized, turned his back and went and told his father who joined him to go and tell coach paterno, but nobody addressed law enforcement officials. it's inexcusable. >> so b.j. schechter, the report is, joe paterno spoke to a witness and let it sit right thereafter moving it up the chain of command. but then never followed up on it after that. i mean, how are -- how's penn state alumni or anybody for that matter going to be able to reconcile with that? >> i think it's very clear that joe paterno did the very bear minimum and he didn't do enough. he's the most powerful person at penn state, he has an ethical and moral obligation to do more, and he didn't. how does he fix this or attempt to right this? he's got to come out, be con treat, apologize. he's got to reach out to the victims, we need to hear from
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him. he needs to apologize. he needs to come out now and tell these students look, don't do anything stupid, i'm no longer the coach here, go home. >> mike papantonio, what about joe paterno. what is his best move right now legally, based on what we know. based on what's being reported. what is his best move to come out, make a statement, full disclosure what he knew, when he knew it, how he handled it? i get a sense -- the man, i believe is 84 years old, he probably doesn't have the energy to fight all of this so he says i'll get out at the end of the year, board of trustees say, wait a minute, it's way too serious for that. you need to go now. what's his best move right now? >> to do and say as little as possible from a legal standpoint. that's the best thing joe paterno can do. he might have just escaped a bullet, and here's the bullet. under the statutory law, he
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might have done the very, very minimal from a legal standpoint that he had to do. from a moral standpoint it's atrocious. from a legal standpoint he may have escaped a bullet. this didn't happen in a vacuum, you can go all the way back to 1994, he's called victim number seven, he's aged 10. this is something in 1994, the janitor saw what happened, it was reported to officials and officials ignored it. what do you think the possibilities really are of joe paterno never hearing about that? 1994? what do you think -- it's almost nonexistent. the more he talks, the more he subjects himself to real important cross-examination kind of questions. he needs to shut up and go away. the best thing he can do is get out of there with some class. he's not shown any class for 15 years. >> can we only assume tonight that the board of trustees have got a heck of a lot information than is being reported?
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>> yes. >> and they were put in an untenable situation, they needed to move to save the integrity of the university? >> i would like to address that. obviously so. but here's the most egregious part of it all, the fact of the matter is -- not of it all, we know sandusky is the biggest culprit of them all. they can have the information or what have you, but joe paterno along with the a.d., along with the business of finance guy, along with that graduate assistant. all of these guys knew. the graduate assistant was still coaching in your office as a wide receivers coach as well. >> a level of acceptance within the program that someone knew and nothing was being done about it. >> it's clearly about the name. >> gentlemen, we have to run. stay with us, mike papantonio, steven a. smith, b.j. schechter and gene robinson will join us next. also coming up, rick perry's unbelievable debate melt journ. is he a goner?
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we're following the breaking news out of the state of pennsylvania. legendary football coach joe paterno has been fired tonight. let's bring back eugene robinson, mike pap antoneny, also joining us on the phone steven a. smith and b.j. schechter. how in the world does penn state recover from this? this story season the going to go away any time soon. a lot of legal ramifications will be drawn out. >> it's going to take time. the board has to do its own investigation. what went so horribly wrong in that athletic department, in that institution? and then they're going to have to slowly, i think, come back appropriately. and if that means, for example, drastic change in the athletic department, totally cleaning
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house, calling off a sport for a year or something -- i mean, you call off the football program for a year or something. it could be a radical thing to do. but it could come to that depending on what they find? >> honesty right now more than anything. they have to be honest, they had a county district attorney who chose not to prosecute, that's got to be answered why. a campus investigator who didn't have enough backbone do say, i'm not going to drop this investigation. county police who valued football -- >> this is dave -- >> it goes from the top to the bottom. >> steven a. smith, your thoughts, how do they recover? >> i think they're taking a step in the right direction, they're cleaning house, the president is gone, the football coach is gone. obviously the graduate assistant who is a football coach is gone. two other individuals have been arrested on perjury charges, that's a great start. it all depends, guys, because the one thing we didn't bring up, is that when this was
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initially broached around the year 2000, the district attorney who was supposed to be in charge never had pursued the case, and then in 2005 he disappeared off the face of the earth. they still haven't found him at all. all they found was a computer with a hard drive that was severely damaged. they said -- even the fbi said they haven't seen anything like it. he disappeared off the face of the earth. if we find out that had something to do with this too. >> there will be a federal investigation. how does the university come back from something like this, b.j.? >> for 15 years, penn state did everything wrong. tonight they started to do something right. what they need to do is follow the lead of the board of trustees which did absolutely what they needed to do, and move forward. start being honest, start taking responsibility for what happened, start reaching out to these families, start taking a look at the football program and make it just a part of the
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university like everything else. follow the lead for what they did tonight. if they can move in that direction, it will take time, but they'll get there. >> the wingest football coach in college football. 409 wins, the only number anyone's paying attention to tonight is the number of accusers coming forward. that number is nine. thanks for your time tonight. coming up, rick perry's epic meltdown at the republican debate. stay tuned. [ man ] pro-gresso they fit! okay-y... okay??? i've been eating progresso and now my favorite old jeans...fit. okay is there a woman i can talk to? [ male announcer ] progresso. 40 soups 100 calories or less. what is this shorty? uh, tissues sir, i'm sick. you don't cough, you don't show defeat. give me your war face! raaah! [ male announcer ] halls. a pep talk in every drop. i'm making my money do more. i'm consolidating my assets.
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the candidates took to the stage in another knockdown dragout of bullet points. the cnbc debate in rochester, michigan was supposed to be focused on the economy. but the one moment getting the
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most attention, came from texas governor rick per we. >> the fact of the matter is, we better have a plan in place that americans can get their hands around, and that's the reason my flat tax is the only one of these good folks on the stage, balances the budget in 2020, it does the things to the regulatory climate that has to happen. and i will tell you, it's three agencies of government when i get there that are gone. commerce, education and the -- what's the third one there, let's see? commerce, education, and the. >> epa? >> epa, there you go. >> let's stop -- >> serious ly, is epa one you'r talking about or -- >> no, sir, we're talking about the agencies of government -- epa needs to be rebuilt, there's no doubt about that. >> you can't name the third one?
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>> the third agency of government, i would do away with education, commerce and -- let's see, i can't -- the third one i can't. sorry. >> what about the epa and the new rules coming out of the epa? >> anyone who has ever done any public speaking at all, let me give testimony tonight, folks. that is painful to watch. although 13 minutes later, perry remembered what he wanted to say. >> name the top programs that you would cut in terms of long-term deficit reduction, include medicare, medicaid, social security and defense spending in the order you see fit. >> well, every one of those, and by the way, that was the department of energy i was reaching for a while ago. >> perry had to address his stumble in the spin room following the debate. >> i'm glad i had my boots on tonight, because i sure stepped in it out there.
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the bottom line is, i may have forgotten energy, but i haven't forgotten my conservative principles. >> let's bring in eugene robinson, jen saki, former white house due communications adviser for president obama. and steve cornaki. jen, let's start with you first. is that big-sized texas toast that we just saw? is it over? >> well, i would say rick perry probably has a c-minus grade. tonight he failed the test. does it mean he's out? i don't know, it's a hard call to make. does it mean he's increased his chances of passing the class? probably not. >> he went right to his conservative principles, saying, i'm the guy you can count on. is that a good play? >> it's tough, because that moment sticks out to everybody, about rick perry who watched the
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debate. every debate has been terrible for him, he comes across as unprepared which makes him also come across as unqualified. >> big word, isn't it? >> it is. but this is the wrath on rick per perry. he doesn't have the intellectual heft to be president, and he's not prepared and look at the way he performs in debates. tonight he confirms all of that. and his donors are -- must be just tearing up the phone lines, chewing out and saying that their checkbooks are closing. >> steve, what about that? what about the fund-raisers out there? what about the people that are supporting him? this is beyond not being prepared. does the man know what he's talking about? >> i'll put the question out there, i think if there's any candidate in the republican presidential race right now, will this guy be around by the iowa caucuses? i think it's rick perry. i think there's a chance he
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could drop out even before iowa. he's the one that has something to lose. you look at all the other candidates up there. everyone thinks gingrich is trying to sell books. who knows what herman cain is doing, it's working for him at least for now. the others are happy with the exposure they get. rick perry was a big substantial figure in this race, he's fallen down in the polls, that was before this. this is on top of the new hampshire mess, on top of all the debate messes and debacles. he has five, six more debates between now and withiowa if he s to tough this thing out. everyone's going to be upset, donors. i think he drops out of the race before iowa. >> why do i get the feeling we're going to be seeing some predebate rehearsal tapes that might be better than this? >> well, we can only hope. all i know is, saturday night live is working on their exit for saturday right now. we'll look forward to watching that.
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>> does it eliminate him? >> i think it comes close, ed, to tell you the truth. it's not like he was shooting out the lights, his numbers started here and they went here. and that's not the right that's the right -- not the right direction. now, he's got all this money in the bank that he raisede1ñr ear. so he seems to be the logical personfá to go upok if herman c started to go down because of the sexual harassment allegations. if there wasq going to bet( a py takeoff, this will tend to send it back down again and he may not get anz{q) chance. o cf1 o paul didn't do a good job with student loans. >> oh, none of them dr. ñ is forçó doing away with studen loans. assistance for students. forward to running against them nextfá year. >> steve kornacki, who were you impressed with? >> i continue to be impressed
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with the performance, you know of mitt romney. he was asked a pointed question early in the debate about basically is there anything you actually believe in and anythin( you're consistent on? with a straight face he called himself a model of constancy. hee1 segued from the specific issues and talked ab how he's loyal to his basefá and loyal t his wife and loyal to -- i guess the republican party or something. you know, it was a very glib answer. there's nobody on the stage to challenge him. you know, i think he's got his shtick down. once again, almost byjf default but by putting on a good performance, mitt romney is a winner. >> well, i have to say to allokf you here tonight, i think that newt gingrich has been the comeback kid in the last severa1 debates. very much in command of what he wants to say and how he wants to say it. stay with us. a lot moret( coming up. herman cain's big debate highlight is coming up.
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the d%cgte. just how did herman cain do?ok [ artis brown ] america is facing some tough challenges right now.
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two of the most important are energy security and economic growth. north america actually has one of the largest oil reserves in the world. a large part of that is oil sands. this resource has the ability to create hundreds of thousands of jobs. at our kearl project in canada, we'll be able to produce these oil sands with the same emissions as many other oils and that's a huge breakthrough. that's good for our country's energy security and our economy. finally tonight, more on the republican debate from michigan. herman cain was certainly going to be asked about thev3'xual harassment allegations against him.q but when the moderators tried to get some answers from the candidate, they were bullied by t.ú'zudience. >> here we're focusing on character and judgment. you have been a ceo. >> yes.
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[ audience boos ] >> you knowjf shareholders are reluctant to hiret( a ceo where there are character issues. why should the american people hire a president if they feel there are character issues? >> the american people deserve better than someone being tried in the court of public opinion, based on unfounded accusations.á that's what -- [ applause ]ñi and i value my character and my integrity more than anything else. and for every one person that comes forward with a false accusatione1q, there are probably -- there are thousands who would say none ofe1 that or cain. >> are youc persuaded by mr. oká has smñ wouldi] you have bought his
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company? [ audience boos ] >> look, look, herman cain is a person to respond to these questions, he just did. the people in this room and across this country can make their own assessment.i]t( >> let me switch back to the economy.5a >>i] back to eugene robinson an steve kornacki. why didn't they go after him on this issue? >> i don't know that the other candidatesçó take his candidacy serio seriously. i don't understand(vyy they have allowed them to lead them on the economic plan.t( why is the 9-9-9 tax plan become the republican platform for the economy? we all knowu not just the talkg points, but the facts about it. this is taxing the poor and the middle class to keep theu mone in the pockets of the wealthy. candidates have not
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differentiated themselves from that. they have allowed that to be the r.,1%9ñplan. >> gene, what do you want? >> they want his votes. they want his people. they don't think he's going anywhere. he's got to follow -- they don't sjsá to alienate thate1 followi. they want to attract that following. so they won't be too rough on it. >> how tough will it be when the two accusers come out? >> we'll see what they have to say, because i think the theme of the commentary for more than a week, here's the moment when herman cain ise1 going to starto plummet. i thinke1 i have heard that fou orw3 fiefrve different times ant didn't happen. it can be a misleading barometer, how that audience sounds. when you look at the polling t results over the last coupling of days, a lott( oft( concerns t herman cain has been raised andy they're standing with them and this stuff doesn't bother them or resonate with them.
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they don't think it's real. i think youfv'] that in that room tonight. i think that intimidated mitt romney. that's why hee1 didn't go after herman cain because he started to go after him yesterday.e1 he called the algalegations disturbing with abc news. he didn't wanti to get booed s he backed off. >> a big debate for hime.c to past, i think. &háhp &hc% conference is expected to come out. jen, who do you think president obama wants to run against in this crowd? >> ron paul. you know -- comedy over there watching this at the white house? >> i think they know, all kidding aside, that next year is going to be very difficult. we know -- i haveqçó every confidence the president's going z a second term. but, you know, it's a challenging team. >> they have to be loving this. >> i that must be loving it. you know, you can playok a drinking game first of all. but no. this is not an impressive field.
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